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This super simple oxtail recipe is great on a night in! Seasoned and braised oxtails simmered in a silky onion and garlic brown gravy.
I love love love oxtails. They are definitely something I eat as a treat and something I get excited about making. I like to make or have oxtails one of two ways, southern style or Caribbean. The two are slightly similar but the flavor varies immensely. For Jamaican oxtails, you use scotch bonnets, green onions, browning, and spices like nutmeg and allspice. For southern-style, it’s a lot tamer. I make mine with a hearty onion brown gravy. That is heavy on the sauteed onions and simply spiced with thyme, cayenne, salt, and pepper. It’s my favorite savory brown gravy. Check out my tips and tricks below for the best southern-style oxtails. Try this recipe out and let me know what you think.
TIPS& TRICKS FOR THE BEST SOUTHERN-STYLE OXTAILS:
flour: this one is pretty important in the long run. oxtails have a ton of fat. even if your oxtails don’t look fatty. come braising time they will be. that’s why catching and working with the fat early is so important. starting the braise with oxtails coating in flour not only gives them a nicer color but also starts thickening some fat.
onions x2: onions and southern gravy go hand in hand. to me, the more onions the better. i love onion gravy because it’s a quick and easy way to add a lot of flavor without overwhelming the dish. when you add onions into a gravy that really has time to stew, they break down so much becoming part of the broth adding a ton of richness and depth. the larger the cuts the more they tend to stick out. if you want an onion-rich silky gravy thinly shave the onions. for a chunky gravy, large chunks will work. or do like I do, half thin- half large.
season well: seasoning in layers is key. you never want to be lacking salt that needed to be added well into the beginning. so get in the habit of seasoning with every add-in. that doesn’t mean dump a handful in at every turn. i just mean to account for the small additions here and there and season accordingly. a dash here and there can really go a long way before the final taste test at the end.
browning: browning seasoning is a must. i keep it on hand for all stews i make. it’s absolutely a pantry staple. browning sauce from a bottle is vegetables, spices, and herbs in a brown slurry that adds deep dark color to your stews. don’t let it be confused with Caribbean browning which Is burnt brown sugar.
cornstarch: a cornstarch slurry at the end will help all the fat tighten up. and give you a velvety mouthfeel. add as little or as much as you like. make sure to use cold water to blend the cornstarch to make the paste.
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